Brock Purdy adds resilience to his unlikely 2022 portfolio

Brock Purdy adds resilience to his unlikely 2022 portfolio
Brock Purdy adds resilience to his unlikely 2022 portfolio

Brock Purdy had not trailed a second during his three victories with the 49ers. He briefly trailed on his debut against the Dolphins when he took over for an injured Jimmy Garoppolo, but hasn’t looked back since.

Sunday was a different story for the seventh-round rookie from Iowa State. The 49ers’ otherworldly defense failed to live up to its nickname, allowing quarterback Jarrett Stidham and the Raiders to throw for 365 yards and score 34 points.

Purdy and the 49ers offense faced a 10-point deficit late in the second period, putting the rookie in uncharted territory. With the 49ers aiming for a long playoff run, Purdy’s second-half response inspired a lot of confidence.

The 49ers trailed 24-14 with 10:34 left in the third quarter after putting their opening second-half possession on the line. Purdy led them on an effective 8-play, 75-yard drive that ended with a home visit from Christian McCaffrey at 14 yards.

Then, fast forward to the end of the fourth quarter, with the game tied at 27-27. Purdy led the 49ers downfield for the game-leading touchdown, a quick drive that went 75 yards in five minutes.

At that point, it looked like Purdy had just led the 49ers to a game-winning drive, and the No. 1 defense would continue its run in the second half and stop the Raiders. But thanks to Stidham, Davante Adams and the Raiders for finding a way to level the game at 34 apiece.

Wasn’t that enough?

Brock Purdy led the 49ers on a potentially game-winning drive with 1:11 left on the clock, setting up veteran kicker Robbie Gould for a 41-yard field goal that could have wiped him out in late regulation.

In those last two drives, Purdy went 6 of 10 for 118 yards. One was a touchdown for the head; the other put the 49ers in a position for a game-winning field goal.

The 49ers had been steaming opponents heading into Week 17, beating the teams by double digit averages. None of the games with Brock Purdy as a starter were particularly close and never tested his ability to lead drives in tight situations.

As WR Brandon Aiyuk said after the match:

“The moment is never too great for [Brock Purdy]. We’re not just trying to come up with a plan to hide what’s going on. He leads 2 mins away, changing play calls. Today really showed us that this dude is on a different level and he can play for sure.

The 49ers weren’t expecting a heavyweight fight on Sunday as 10-point favorites, but what ensued was the perfect test for their young quarterback, who is looking to lead them on a possible run. of the Super Bowl.

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